Central Plateau, North Island

Central Plateau, North Island
View from a friend's farm

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Roads we travel on,Summer and Winter


Jim, you asked if we have a “rainy season” here in NZ. Winter is June,July and August, with colder days, and nights, more rain, and snow,mostly in the South Island, and the higher areas in the North Island. And yes, metal roads get slushy, muddy and slippery. In the busier areas, graders come to move the snow, or level the metal to make driving safer.photo courtesy on Internet.Models like this or similar, and many other brands and designs to suit all purposes.

volvo Grader 

Here is  a  road in Otago , in summer ,    the green grass looking good for the sheep.

metal road in Otago 

A little further up the road, in the  middle of winter, snowbound, even 4WD vehicles had problems, and tractor transport was safer.

road at the farm

Tractors of all brands and sizes, cabs with comfortable seats, necessary for the colder South Island winters. Photo courtesy of the Internet.

Case Tractor

Many roads that  go to the ski fields, or ones that have snow covering them in winter, have “chain bays”, where vehicles can pull over and fit chains on the wheels before carrying on. This is on a tar-sealed road from Arrowtown to Wanaka, South Island.

Snow chain bay on Crown Range road

Another part of the same road, December 2011.

All seal road to Wanaka


Quotation of the day, by Henry A. Kissinger

“ If you don’t know where you are going, every road will get you nowhere”

Greetings from Jean


Carol Mattingly said...

Interesting hearing about New Zealand.

Lindsjö taxar said...

Great posts and interesting to read about your country.
The road you asked for is not a traffic road, only to a lake. But you see how much snow we got in 2 days

Nancy J said...

Carol, glad you enjoyed some of my news, I so like looking up places in the world,have probably done more "Geography" lately than at any time in my life, and Lindsjo, still lots of snow.Do you use chains? Or have a 4WD?? Love the moose photos, they are huge, but look very tame. Cheers from Jean.

Michaele said...

What a wonderful place you live! Thanks for sharing with us. I had no idea what it was like living there.

Nancy J said...

Michaele, I can say the same when I see your place, the animals, and family pics. I have really no idea how huge your country is, distances that make me think twice about travel, and the beautiful winter scenes. But, I guess, you are longing for spring.here leaves are turning golden, falling, slowly the drought-browned grass is greening little by little with morning dew.Autumn is here. Cheers from Jean

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Barb said...

My friend just E-mailed and said it's raining in Wanaka. They just finished a road trip to the N Island - had a wonderful 10 days but were happy to return "home" to Wanaka. Will be back in AZ in April. Looks like you had a great vacation, too!

Nancy J said...

Yes Barb, a good time, and Imet so many great people .Hope your friends enjoyed the "north", but Wanaka is so beautiful. April, it will start getting colder there, just in time for them to travel back to another springtime. Cheers, Jean.

Jim said...

Jean, what a sweetheart you are to explain the 'road situation' in NZ! Sorry I am just getting to reply to your last few posts....things have been busy around here for a change!! lol
Now to the roads....being a northern hempispheric guy, I had to get my head around that the further south 'you' go, the colder it gets in the winter. (I had to say that 10 times to have it sink in!! lol..a slight exaggeration)

I can see that the metal roads would need constant grading especially if a lot of precipitation. Do you have problems with wash-outs and landslides? And is that why they wouldn't be permanently asphalted (tar-sealed)?

Sorry for all these questions...nature of this beast! lol Used to drive my Dad crazy as a kid!!
Must really be bad driving conditions to require chains in certain areas. Very interesting indeed Jean and thanks so much for taking the time to explain.
We are so desperately waiting for spring to arrive as I look out at the snow everywhere....the up-side is that the air is so fresh!
Have a great day.

Nancy J said...

Jim, all main roads are sealed, and in the real country areas, bad corners or the really steepest parts are sealed, the rest is metal.Chains are used on the mountain roads to the ski fields, and the higher main roads that get a lot of snow in the winter. Ski field roads have a check point , or they did years ago,and the tyres are checked for chains before you can go up, but this is when the roads are dangerously skiddy, or too much snow to get through. Spring, how welcome that will be for you, here we are getting darker mornings, some colder early starts, red sunrise skies, sure signs autumn(fall) is with us right now. Greetings from Jean